10 Top frequently asked questions about prepaid meters
What is a prepaid meter?
A prepaid meter is a device that measures the electricity or water consumption like a conventional meter with the added feature that credit may be loaded and once that credit is exhausted, the meter cuts off the supply. One major difference is that a conventional meter counts up, whereas a prepaid meter counts down, and when it gets to zero, it switches off the utility (electricity, water or gas). It assists to monitor and control consumption of the utility.
How do prepaid meters work?
A prepaid meter is installed and credit tokens are purchased and loaded by the consumer onto the meter. The units purchased are counted down by the meter and once the credit reaches zero, the meter cuts off the supply. There are many different makes and models of prepaid meters and they all work essentially in this way. Different models have different ways of purchasing credit, some use a card system, others use a token system, wherein a 20 digit token is entered into a keypad. Some meters have an LED indicator that flashed more when more electricity is being consumed.
How accurate are prepaid meters when compared to conventional meters?
In our experience, with the SABS approved, locally produced meters that we use, we are confident that they are as accurate when compared to conventional meters.
Technically speaking these meters are class one or class two accuracy.
What are the benefits of a prepaid meter?
There are numerous benefits, some of which include:
1. better control over electricity spend,
2. saving electricity as consciousness of usage increases
3. electricity bills come under the control of the consumer
4. electronic counting down of units to indicate to consumer when budget will be exhausted
What is the difference between a council prepaid meter and a sub prepaid meter?
In a nutshell, the Municipality or Eskom provides council prepaid meters, and sub prepaid meters are provided privately (sometimes known as private prepaid meters). A person would apply for a council prepaid meter when they need the meter for their own use. A person would apply for a sub prepaid meter when there are several consumers on one property or when they have tenants and would like to collect consumption in advance of use. An article with more information on the differences between council prepaid meters and private prepaid meters click here.
How do I apply for a prepaid meter?
If you require a council prepaid meter (to get off the council billing system), you need to apply with either your Municipality or Eskom, you need to apply with the entity that bills you for electricity. In most cases, the owner needs to go into their offices, take your utilities bill and ID with you, complete an application form, and pay for the meter, be sure to get a receipt. It may require more than one visit. You can find more information here (at the bottom of the page):
How do I apply for a sub prepaid meter?
Simply fill in an enquiry form on our website and we will get back to you with a quotation and all the requirements. You will need to complete an application form and send us 1-3 months of your council bill to set the rate correctly.
How do sub prepaid meters work?
The consumer/tenant purchases prepaid electricity tokens for their prepaid sub meter and loads the token onto their meter in the usual way. At the end of each month the total revenue collected on the prepaid sub meters is paid to the property owner’s bank account, who in turn pays the supply authority (eg Municipality or Eskom). For a more in depth explanation on how sub prepaid meters work (click here)
Can you supply sub prepaid meters for a complex?
Yes, this system works perfectly for a complex or body corporate with a bulk supply. When set to automated vending on our system, all the funds purchased on the prepaid meters is paid into the Body Corporate bank account who in turn pays the supply authority (eg Municipality or Eskom). Find out more about prepaid meters for a complex or body corporate click here
Where can my tenants buy tokens for their prepaid meters?
This may vary depending on where your prepaid meters are registered. JKNV Energy offers the following convenient purchase outlets:
- Pick n Pay stores
- Checkers Hyper
- Uni Pin outlets
- BP Express stores
- FNB internet banking, FNB cell phone banking & FNB ATMs
- Standard Bank, ABSA, Nedbank internet banking
- Online: Credit Card purchases via EasyPay
- Phone App: EasyPay
- Self vend options are also available, if you prefer not to use the automated vending. The tenant will buy the tokens from the landlord or property manager directly.
If your question was not answered here, please see additional Prepaid Meters FAQs. You can also leave a message below with your additional question/s or comment. I would love to hear from you.